Musical Theatre Initiative

2017 Timeline and Information
February 8 – 11, 2017

70 applicants accepted to participate

Two Sign up Forms:

  1. Contact Information
  2. Time slot Sign-up
    • Wednesday at 5PM until filled
    • In-person at the Festival registration table
    • Requirements for Signing up
      • (Name, contact info, names of song selections)


Criteria for MTI

Auditions will be evaluated upon by the following criteria:

  • Ability to urgently pursue strong, clear objectives as an actor throughout the song.  Student must create an arch to the song in terms of storytelling, with a clear beginning, middle and ending.
  • Ability to make varied, specific and bold acting and singing choice, which are expressed throughout the performance lyrically and musically.
  • Ability to perform the song with vocal excellence, exhibiting a healthy and versatile vocal instrument through which the student makes varied, musical choices that add texture and layers to their overall performance. Must exhibit a strong understanding of the lyrics and orchestrations, musicality is strongly considered.
  • Ability to physically connect to the song, making strong and varied choices expressing their character fully physically as well as emotionally.
  • Student demonstrates the ability to make acting, physical and vocal choices that meet the demands of and are appropriate for the musical theater form.
  • Student demonstrates range as an actor and singer, selecting contrasting pieces from the musical theater genre.


Warm up rooms TBD


Guidelines for Musical Theatre Initiative participation:

  • Students are asked to prepare TWO musical theatre selections. Both pieces combined should not exceed 8 minutes and should contrast in style and tone. It is required that one of two selections be from a musical that premiered prior to 1965.
  • Both selections should be full songs. In the first round, you may use cuts or a trimmed version of a full song to stay within the allotted 3.5 minute time limit. This selection can eliminate the verse, a repeat or a tag at the end of the song but should feel like a complete story. Or, you may choose to present two songs with appropriate cuts. As long as the performance is within the approximate 3.5 minute time limit, the preliminary audition may include your choice of material.
  • The material should be memorized, rehearsed and performance ready.
  • In addition to doing the above, students must bring copies of their sheet music to the Festival, in the correct key, clearly marked with any accompanist notes, three-hole punched and not cutting off any necessary bass line notes, key signatures or other musical markings. A pianist will be provided or you may bring your own.


PRELIMINARY ROUND (Thursday): 70 applicants
Sing two contrasting selections (16 measure cut of each)

  • Up-tempo and Ballad
  • pre-1965 and Contemporary

12-15 minute flights (5 actors/flight)

time: 3.5hrs for audition


SEMI FINALIST ROUND (Friday): 16 applicants

Two selections for each performer in a 8-10 minute time slot

  • performers encouraged to select contrasting songs

time: 2.5hrs for audition


FINAL ROUND (Saturday evening performance): 6 finalists

  • each finalist performs two full songs
  • finalist performance in-between invited scene performances


Preliminary Auditions (CLOSED AUDITION)

MORNING : (3.5 hours) 9:00am – 1:00pm

AFTERNOON: Guest clinician WORKSHOP (60-90 minutes) TBD

16 semi-finalists announced after Thursday evening play performance

After the announcements, students sign up for time slots for following day. Those with Irene Ryan conflicts should sign up for time slots first. (collect all potential Irene Ryan conflicts from semi-finalists for Friday morning and afternoon)

SEMI-FINAL AUDITIONS 9:00 am-11:00 am (Audience Invited)

  • 8-10 minute audition (contrasting material encouraged)
  • selected respondent input/adjudication – written comments to consider for finalist selection

The 6 finalists selected will be announced after the Friday night performance. Students will sign up for a rehearsal time slot on Saturday AM.



Rehearsal with pianist TBD

  • MTI Finalists and invited scenes (if necessary)



Dress rehearsal (4 hours) TBD




  • 6-8 schools with either participating or associate productions entered for the 2016 calendar year will be  invited to present a selection from their musical theater production for the Saturday evening Showcase Performance.
  • MTI finalists perform both selections in between each invited school presentation
  • MTI winner announced after completion of showcase
    • audience tweet their favorite




Up to eight college/university musical productions will be featured in the Musical Theatre Initiative Showcase on the final night of the Festival. To be considered for participation, please submit a video recording 10-12 minutes in length through a private youtube page to the Musical Theatre Initiative coordinator, Jeffrey McEvoy @ Submissions may be a group of excerpts from a musical production or a single scene.